Sussex Borough hit with high SCMUA rates

Sussex Borough. The Sussex Borough Council is considering how much of an increase it would have to pass by the end of the year to cover an 8.7 percent increase in fees from he Sussex County Municipal Authority.

| 20 Nov 2022 | 11:34

Sussex Borough residents could face another increase in their water and sewer bills as the Sussex County Municipal Utilities leveled the borough with an 8.7 increase in its bills, Mayor Edward Meyer reported on Nov. 15.

Meyer said the increase comes out to between $79,000 and $80,000 dollars.

Council President Robert Holowach said borough officials needed to figure out the exact rate percentage they would need to increase very quickly in order to cover the increase.

However, Business Administrator Antoinette Smith reminded the council that any increase would have to be passed in December to go into effect for the second quarter bills that cover January, February and March.

“That would put us a quarter behind because the first quarter is October, November and December, which we put the last increase in place for,” Smith said. “So, this one will be starting the second quarter.”

Councilman Charles Fronheiser reminded the council that they recently passed 3 percent increases for the year and said he’s unwilling to raise the rates any higher than what it would cost to cover the SCMUA bill.

“We need to rationalize the SCMUA situation on its own,” Holowach said. “We haven’t even gotten through budgeting and yet, and we’re going to have to make some tough decisions about what has to and doesn’t have to happen based on finances. But this is something we’re going to have to deal with going forward.”

Smith said a possible rate increase would have to be introduced at the council’s next meeting on Dec. 6, with adoption on Dec. 20 to meet the deadline.